Wednesday, July 6

Bangaldesh another feather in the cap



A ruthless Bangladesh recorded its fifth straight ODI series victory at home, crushing Zimbabwe by 58 runs in the second match yesterday at Sher-e-Bangla National Cricket Stadium in the capital.

Unlike the first match, Bangladesh had to toil hard to seal the deal as Elton Chigumbura and Sikandar offered a staunch resistance in fifth wicket partnership.

Fast bowler Al-Amin Hossain dismissed both of them in consecutive overs in his second spell to ruin the hopes of Zimbabwe. It was Bangladesh’s fourth straight victory at home in this year after they had successfully got the better of three top ranked teams- Pakistan, India and South Africa.

Opener Imrul Kayes lifted Bangladesh to 241 for nine Zimbabwe, hitting 76 in his comeback. Zimbabwe were bowled out for 183 in 43.2 overs to concede seventh straight defeat to Bangladesh. They were whitewashed in five-match series in their previous tour to Bangladesh last December with which the hosts began its golden run.

Fast bowler Mustafizur Rahman returned with three for 33 and on paper was the most successful bowler for the side. However it was Al-Amin who gave the crucial breakthroughs to help Bangladesh take an unassailable 2-0 lead.

Al-Amin who finished with two for 22, took the match away from Zimbabwe after Chigumbura (47) and Raza (33) combined together 73 runs to raise a prospect of victory.

With Zimbabwe reeling at meager 78 for four and another meek surrender was on the card, the duo left Bangladesh in a state of confusion.

The hosts were in real trouble when Chigumbura launched an astonishing attack on Mashrafe Mortaza to collect 15 runs including two fours and a six in three successive deliveries. That took the pressure off and Raza, inspired by his captain, also took left arm spinner Arafat Sunny in disdain in the immediate next over.

Al-Amin Hossain came at this point and firstly removed Raza who failed to connect well a short-pitched delivery. In his next over, he dismissed dangerman Chigumbura with a slower leg-cutter to dash the Zimbabwe’s hope of winning the match.

The rest of the batsman could add just 17 runs after the dismissal of Chigumbura as Mustafizur Rahman sliced the lower order.

Earlier, Nasir Hossain scored 41 while Sabbir Rahman Rumman made 33 to help Kayes in steering the side to bail out from the danger as the Zimbabwe bowlers caused trouble with fuller length deliveries.

Kayes replaced Shakib Al Hasan who flew to the U.S. on Sunday night to be with his wife, who gave birth to a baby girl. He smashed six fours and four sixes in his 89 balls knock and looked set to score a century but was dismissed smashing a full toss delivery to long-off, of pacer Sean Williams.